Have a Plan for Health
When I was a young physician and began making money for the first time in my life, someone came up to me and said that it was time for me to have a “financial plan”. Ooooh! I had no idea at the time what that meant. Of course, that same person quickly began to educate me, being a financial planner.
As most of you know, a financial plan is a system of making sure that your money is working for you so you can begin to make more than you need for immediate survival. Within that framework of taking care of your finances, you are often encouraged to invest in large insurance policies that will cover you “just in case”. Often the “just in case” is a bad thing that happens to your health. But no one ever talks to you about having a plan for your health.
Why not have a plan for your health? Doesn’t it make sense to figure out what your health needs might be and to take care of them so that you don’t need to worry about illness? Most people think that their health insurance is their health plan, but it isn’t really. Health insurance covers you when you are sick with something and allows for you to have tests that will be paid by insurance, only if you have evidence that you need those tests.
Our insurance culture is designed around waiting for us to get a serious illness. It doesn’t cover planning for us to remain healthy so that we can do what we want for as long as we like.
I propose that everyone should have a Health Plan, which involves an understanding of what health means to you, and a plan for sustaining your health. It should be reviewed annually, and acted upon with the intention of being able to enjoy your favorite activities and have fun as much as possible.
A good health plan should involve a review of your lifestyle, including how you eat, sleep, work, exercise, attitudes, and whether you are enjoying your life, a physical exam, and a discussion of your desires for your health. Together you and your practitioner should then create a plan for how you will achieve your desires for health in the coming year.